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NHL releases 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs exhibition, qualifiers, round-robin schedule

Get ready for a lot of hockey games

From left to right, Vancouver Canucks' Jalen Chatfield, Bo Horvat and Troy Stecher stop to take drinks during an NHL hockey training camp in Vancouver, British Columbia, Monday, July 13, 2020. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)
From left to right, Vancouver Canucks' Jalen Chatfield, Bo Horvat and Troy Stecher stop to take drinks during an NHL hockey training camp in Vancouver, British Columbia, Monday, July 13, 2020. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)

The NHL has released its schedule for the 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs.

Let me put it this way: It’s a lot of hockey in a short amount of time.

The 24-team tournament will start with exhibition games on July 28. All Eastern Conference games will be played in Toronto, and all Western Conference games will be played in Edmonton.

The Stanley Cup Qualifiers will begin on Aug. 1 in Toronto and Edmonton.

Right now, teams are holding training camps. They are working through injuries and virus cases as they try to get everyone healthy and inside the bubble. They only have a couple weeks left to prepare before the grind starts.

Here is the exhibition games schedule (all times ET):

Tuesday, July 28

  • Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Philadelphia Flyers, 4 p.m.
  • Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Montreal Canadiens, 8 p.m.
  • Edmonton Oilers vs. Calgary Flames, 10:30 p.m.

Wednesday, July 29

  • Tampa Bay Lightning at Florida Panthers, 12 p.m.
  • Colorado Avalanche vs. Minnesota Wild, 2:30 p.m.
  • Carolina Hurricanes vs. Washington Capitals, 4 p.m.
  • St. Louis Blues vs. Chicago Blackhawks, 6:30 p.m.
  • New York Islanders vs. New York Rangers, 8 p.m.
  • Vancouver Canucks vs. Winnipeg Jets; 10:30 p.m.

Thursday, July 30

  • Nashville Predators vs. Dallas Stars, 4 p.m.
  • Boston Bruins vs. Columbus Blue Jackets, 7 p.m.
  • Vegas Golden Knights vs. Arizona Coyotes, 10 p.m.

Stanley Cup qualifiers schedule:

Beginning Aug. 1, the Stanley Cup qualifiers, including the round-robin games for the top-seeded teams, will begin.

The NHL explains: The top four teams in each conference, based on points percentage, will play a three-game round-robin, and the No. 5-12 seeds will play in eight best-of-5 series. The winners of those series will advance to the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs against the four teams from the round-robin.

Here is the schedule for each series:

Eastern Conference (Toronto)

(5) Pittsburgh Penguins vs. (12) Montreal Canadiens

  • Saturday, Aug. 1: Canadiens vs. Penguins, 8 p.m.
  • Monday, Aug. 3: Canadiens vs. Penguins, 8 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5: Penguins vs. Canadiens, 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Aug. 7: Penguins vs. Canadiens*
  • Saturday, Aug. 8: Canadiens vs. Penguins*

(6) Carolina Hurricanes vs. (11) New York Rangers

  • Saturday, Aug. 1: Rangers vs. Hurricanes, 12 p.m. ET
  • Monday, Aug. 3: Rangers vs. Hurricanes, 12 p.m. ET
  • Tuesday, Aug. 4: Hurricanes vs. Rangers, 8 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 6: Hurricanes vs. Rangers*
  • Saturday, Aug. 8: Rangers vs. Hurricanes*

(7) New York Islanders vs. (10) Florida Panthers

  • Saturday, Aug. 1: Panthers vs. Islanders, 4 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 4: Panthers vs. Islanders, 12 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5: Islanders vs. Panthers, 12 p.m.
  • Friday, Aug. 7: Islanders vs. Panthers*
  • Sunday, Aug. 9: Panthers vs. Islanders*

(8) Toronto Maple Leafs vs. (9) Columbus Blue Jackets

  • Sunday, Aug. 2: Blue Jackets vs. Maple Leafs, 8 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 4: Blue Jackets vs. Maple Leafs, 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 6: Maple Leafs vs. Blue Jackets, TBD
  • Friday, Aug. 7: Maple Leafs vs. Blue Jackets*, TBD
  • Sunday, Aug. 9: Blue Jackets vs. Maple Leafs*, TBD

Round-robin

  • Sunday, Aug. 2: Flyers vs. Bruins, 3 p.m.
  • Monday, Aug. 3: Capitals vs. Lightning, 4 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5: Lightning vs. Bruins, 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 6: Capitals vs. Flyers, TBD
  • Saturday, Aug. 8: Bruins vs. Capitals, TBD
  • Sunday, Aug. 9: Flyers vs. Lightning, TBD

Western Conference (Edmonton)

(5) Edmonton Oilers vs. (12) Chicago Blackhawks

  • Saturday, Aug. 1: Blackhawks vs. Oilers, 3 p.m.
  • Monday, Aug. 3: Blackhawks vs. Oilers, 10:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5: Oilers vs. Blackhawks, 10:30 p.m.
  • Friday, Aug. 7: Oilers vs. Blackhawks*, TBD
  • Saturday, Aug. 8: Blackhawks vs. Oilers*, TBD

(6) Nashville Predators vs. (11) Arizona Coyotes

  • Sunday, Aug. 2: Coyotes vs. Predators, 2 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 4: Coyotes vs. Predators, 2:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5: Predators vs. Coyotes, 2:30 p.m.
  • Friday, Aug. 7: Predators vs. Coyotes*, TBD
  • Sunday, Aug. 9: Coyotes vs. Predators*, TBD

(7) Vancouver Canucks vs. (10) Minnesota Wild

  • Sunday, Aug. 2: Wild vs. Canucks, 10:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 4: Wild vs. Canucks, 10:45 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 6: Canucks vs. Wild, TBD
  • Friday, Aug. 7: Canucks vs. Wild*, TBD
  • Sunday, Aug. 9: Wild vs. Canucks*, TBD

(8) Calgary Flames vs. (9) Winnipeg Jets

  • Saturday, Aug. 1: Jets vs. Flames, 10:30 p.m.
  • Monday, Aug. 3: Jets vs. Flames, 2:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 4: Flames vs. Jets, 4:45 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 6: Flames vs. Jets*, TBD
  • Saturday, Aug. 8: Jets vs. Flames*, TBD

Round-robin

  • Sunday, Aug. 2: Blues vs. Avalanche, 6:30 p.m.
  • Monday, Aug. 3: Stars vs. Golden Knights, 6:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5: Avalanche vs. Stars, 6:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 6: Golden Knights vs. Blues, TBD
  • Saturday, Aug. 8: Golden Knights vs. Avalanche, TBD
  • Sunday, Aug. 9: Stars vs. Blues, TBD

* - if necessary

After all of this between July 28 and Aug. 9, then we can start the actual playoffs with 16 teams playing seven-games series'.


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